Andrew Weatherall


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Hypercity Review

by Andy Kellman

Less than a year after the debt-paying Nine O'Clock Drop compilation, Andrew Weatherall trawls through the rich bank of 12" singles and EPs released thus far by the Mille Plateaux-distributed Force Tracks label, one of the premier breeding grounds for constantly impressive, ultra-sleek minimal house. As demonstrated by Weatherall's superb mix job, which is an actual mix, as opposed to Nine O'Clock's you-get-the-whole-trackness, the majority of Force Tracks releases feature neverending house beats supplanted by a disparate clutch of atmospheric effects, veering from dubby washes of vapor to subtle swathes of seering synths to gaseous pops -- just enough ornamentation to still qualify the material as house (just about every element is placed in the name of rhythm), but not so much that the tracks become effluvial and watered down. Whether you want to get down or revel in pure sound, the Force Tracks catalog -- and therefore Hypercity -- delivers the goods in both respects. Just about everyone on the roster is highlighted, including the likes of Stephen Lieb and Frank Elting's MRI ("Human Patterns," "To Be Honest"), San Franciscan screwball Safety Scissors ("Form From Morf," "Lawn for Show," "Hose in Yard"), Andy Mygge's Boogie Nights-referencing alias as Dirk Diggler ("Silverfinger"), and Berlin duo Crane AK ("Polsterplanet," "Regenwelt," "Daisy Love"). And Weatherall waits until the very end to roll out the heavy artillery, Matthias Schaffhauser's remix of Luomo's vocal "Tessio"; the very fact that Weatherall can completely ignore Luomo's landmark Vocalcity album/compilation in favor of a remix is a significant testimony to the label's bottomless depth. A major accomplishment for both label and DJ, Hypercity is every bit a delightful non-stop bliss ride, not to be passed on. Your Force Tracks immersion begins here.

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